The Trump and Russia investigation heats up

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The Trump and Russia investigation heats up

Photo by CNN.

Photo by CNN.

Photo by CNN.

Photo by CNN.

Nicole Revilla, Co-Editor-in-Chief

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The Special Counsel Investigation, also more commonly known as the “Mueller Investigation” over President Trump has begun to heaten up.

Special counsel Robert Mueller and multiple Congressional committees are investigating Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and whether anyone from President Trump’s campaign (or himself) was involved.

The investigation has been ongoing since Trump has taken office, Mueller and his investigators have interviewed witnesses, secured search warrants, issued subpoenas, and uncovered many documents, CNN reports.

Mueller’s investigation has proved cumbersome for the reputation of the President, according to a poll conducted by Ipsos, eighty-five percent of Democrats, and 53 percent of independents believe Russia meddled in the 2016 election – while 46% of Republicans share this same belief, the poll finds.

Mueller’s investigation has already brought dozens of criminal charges against more than 30 defendants, including four Trump associates.

The investigations have so far been conducted in secret, only few details are publicly known.

Earlier in December, Mueller made three court filings against former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn, Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen, and President Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort.

Each court filing revealed important information, including the magnitude his investigation posed to the Trump administration.

President Trump’s former National Security Advisor, Michael Flynn. Photo by NPR.

In December 2017, Michael Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak, CNN reports.

In November 2018, Michael Cohen, after entering in a cooperation agreement with Mueller, admitted that he had lied to Congress about plans to build a Trump Tower in Moscow that endured into the 2016 campaign.

Earlier this year, Cohen also admitted to participating in planning discussions with Trump regarding hush money to payments to Stephanie Clifford (Stormy Daniels), and former Playboy model Karen McDougal about their relationship with President Trump.

Trump’s former lawyer, Michael Cohen. Photo by POLITICO.

Cohen also pleaded guilty to violating campaign finance laws in August.

According to the New York Times, When Cohen pleaded guilty, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said, “the President in this matter has done nothing wrong, and there are no charges against him.”

Another bombshell revelation came out when earlier in November, The Guardian newspaper reported that Paul Manafort, President Trump’s former campaign chairman, has met with WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange several times during critical moments during the 2016 election.

President Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort. Photo by the Wall Street Journal

The story reports that if the meeting in London did occur, it would establish the first direct contact between one of Trump’s associates and WikiLeaks, which began releasing emails hacked from the Democratic National Committee in 2016.

The emails, stolen by Russian hackers and released by WikiLeaks proved detrimental to Trump’s opponent, Hillary Clinton.

If the Mueller investigation can prove that Manafort and Trump’s campaign coordinated the WikiLeaks move against Hillary Clinton, it would strongly suggest collusion.

During the trial, Robert Mueller also said Paul Manafort lied about “five major issues after agreeing to cooperate with prosecutors, including his contact with administration officials” NBC reports.

As the investigation heats up, President Trump has again expressed his willingness to sit down for an interview or provide written responses to Mueller, CNN reports.

President Trump has hired former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani to join his legal team, and he has accepted to defend Trump and attack Mueller.

Many of the aspects of the Mueller trial have been closed off to the public, just a few days ago it was reported that Mueller appeared victorious in a mystery subpoena dispute in a federal appeals court.

The three-page document is the latest information released about the Mueller investigation, according to POLITICO.

The ruling details that the entity fighting the Mueller subpoena is a foreign government-owned company, not a specific individual, POLITICO reports.

The Mueller investigation has been successful in uncovering many twists and turns that took place during the 2016 election, however much more work is still to be done before evidence of Russian interference is confirmed.